Today we went to the HLLUG (Highland Lakes Linux User Group) meeting at the Lakeshore Library. Don is the co-host, I guess you'd call him. Lee Parmeter is the "Chief Instigator" and our Fearless Leader. He won't let us call him anything more serious than that. We had a great time hanging out with our geeky buddies. We were very pleased Charlie Beierle came, he doesn't always make it due to Judy's medical priorities. Melissa Manning came with her husband, John Hibbs and her mom, Dodie came, too. Melissa brings food and great company, she's become a Member In Great Standing, at least with me.
I was so excited, Charlie brought his XO machine, a very special laptop computer. It's a unique design implemented by the One Laptop Per Child organization, founded to bring a simple, inexpensive laptop computer to the children of the world. When the preliminary designs were in place and the software was in development, the US Govt. was given the opportunity to buy them for American schoolchildren. They were rejected. A number of other countries took the offer and have bought them for their school children, but for political reasons some have not. OLPC offered a give-one, get-one purchasing opportunity, where you could buy one and donate one between November 12 and December 31. Charlie got one. I love him for it. So far, only one US city, Birmingham AL, has bought them for its students.
We have a wonderful Hospice volunteer, Peggy Couch. Instead of the usual hour-per-week she's used to volunteering, she's offered to sit for 4-or-5 hours once a month so we can go to the computer club meeting together. I think the Hospice people don't know quite what to do with us or for us; we need so little that we can't provide ourselves. We give them very little trouble, anytime they want to come for checkup or bath is fine with us and they can drop in any time unannounced. We're fine emotionally and they don't have to deal with conflicting egos, anger issues or misunderstandings. We are all on the same page; it's about helping mom to die without undue distress. In essence, it's simple, isn't it? It's great to have a nurse here twice a week to check mom's vitals and assess her current state. She gives me lots of advice about what's normal and expected for this stage of Alzheimer's.
What I really like is the 3-times-a-week baths provided by Linda, who's been giving her baths since she was getting Home Health for her other problems. Bathing is time-consuming and physically demanding for me. And if mom senses that I'm becoming annoyed, she "locks up", becoming very stiff (literally), stubborn, and unpredictable. My own attitude can bite me, bigtime. She almost always gets banged up by throwing out her arms and hitting something hard, or just deciding to sit down...with nothing underneath her. That's my very favorite thing, and the reason I end up with a backache or injury, trying to take all her weight or keeping her from hitting anything on the way down to the floor. I love the bath lady.
I'm off again tomorrow, don't think I like that, but Don needs to work, too. He'll be putting in carpet for NeeCee, so he'll have some pretty sore knees for a couple of days. Time to do the deep housecleaning, again.